Not a commander

Hi, I have a weird idea.

I love commander as a format, but sometimes you need to take a break even from the things you love. So here I am, presenting a weird idea to you. The idea is...

Create a legendary creature card that CAN'T be your commander and give good reasoning as to why that is the case.

Exceptions exist in everything - if we have planeswalkers that CAN be commanders, why not creatures that CAN'T be commanders? I have no idea if anything meaningful will come out of this, but let's see.

Happy smithing


  • edited March 19
    ooh!  I like it!  
    My first thought (not sure if this works) might be some kind of mechanic that gives a commander's minions some sort of benefits, and maybe it's tied to their color identity like this: 
    • [Red] Minion -- if this card is in your Command Zone, then ___[harsh penalty]___.  If your commander's color identity includes [red], then ___[bonus]___ when ___[trigger]___. 
    Or something? I dunno.  Like, I KNOW the contest is literally saying "can't be a commander" but making it a harsh penalty will be a neat challenge to Johnny-style players who will enjoy trying to work around the penalty?  Haha, sorry, it's your contest, I'm just thinking out-loud to the aether of the internets. lol
  • I'm interested in this challenge, but I don't think a card saying "This card can't be your commander" would be elegant at all. Same reason why I'm not a fan of Rowan and Will in a non-commander focused product worrying about this. 

    What about cards with more creative applications of this rule? Stuff like Phage the Untouchable which doesn't explicitly call out a format?
  • edited March 19
    @TerryTags ;That's a great way to look at this! There's pretty much two ways to understand this:
    1) A card that you really don't want in the command zone (but want in your 99)
    2) A card that literally can't be your commander (but would be good in the 99)

    I think your mechanic would need some tidying up, but it's a good concept. I might try to do some cards with it myself just to play with the idea, if that's okay.
  • @Temurzoa That is true. To be fair, I was not really looking for "elegant" rather just having fun, but you are right. That's why I think @TerryTags's idea is quite neat and your point about Phage and stuff like that as well. I'm pretty much letting everyone do whatever they want that's in the spirit of this contest, that's why it's in the "Just for fun contests"
  • edited March 20
    First entry:
    Tera Lady of Doves
    (since in commander, you can't grab things from outside the game)
  • edited March 21
    [edited to remove text]
  • edited March 21
  • Here's a Legendary Land Creature. You can't cast it because it has no CMC, and casting is the only way to play cards from the command zone! (Derevi doesn't count)

    Please excuse the type line... it was supposed to be a Legendary Land Creature - Mountain Elemental, but that didn't fit for some reason.  :D

  • @JackDraco Yes, you can't cast it, but not because it has no mana cost, but because it's a land (not a spell) and you don't cast those, you play them.

    Either way, legendary land creature! Yay! I love land creatures, this is a great idea.
  • @ThePhantomJoker yes, there are two reasons you can't cast it!
  • edited March 23
  • @Shmoohawk, why can't that be your commander?
  • Their reasoning might have been that if this was your commander, your commander's color identity is red, so you can't have blue cards in your deck.
  • @FORFUN I’m pretty sure you can’t use lands that taps for colours outside you colour identify. So you wouldn’t be able to sacrifice an island
  • There are artifacts that allow you to change what type your lands are, so you technically would be able to cast it. You would just need to change one of your lands first.
  • Oh, I see!
  • I'm guessing that just putting "It can't be your commander" in its rules text isn't really allowed, right?
  • Obliquely appropros, I  made a Sorcery that CAN be your commander. 
    It represents a social group being in charge rather than any individual:

    It works like your had a corporation, a kingdom, the CCCP, a mess of goblins fighting over leadership, something like the Girls Scouts in charge, etc....
  • @Obidiah Why not? Sure it is allowed, you just need to come up with a good reason as to why it can't be a commander.
  • Well, I did have to find a way to make it a Legendary creature too.   I had to make several changes needed and I  want the old version as it.  It is now for when you have a small fan club of 6 members.  

    I did have to make a new rule but it totally makes sense in several levels
    * A Devoted Ringleader as a commander makes no sense, she's selfless and all about promoting the chosen Commander.
    * It explains the 6th nymph in the picture. She is the one wearing the non-MTG color orange.
    * Now uses the Exile zone,  so works in non-commander games as it can still fetch up to 5 creatures.

    She's the humble fanatic who is all about others.
  • Uftor the Contrarian

    I don't think it's inelegant if it's a legitimate concern if it was your commander. Made this last year, found it appropriate for your challenge.
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